The Pittsburgh Steelers have been looking forward to the return of running back Le’Veon Bell, after Bell tore his ACL in a game against the rival Bengals in Week 8.
But they may have to wait a little longer.
According to a report from ESPN’s Dan Graziano, Bell is facing a four-game suspension after missing a drug test – it is not for failure of a test.
Writes Graziano, “Sources close to the situation tell me Steelers RB Le’Veon Bell is facing a four-game suspension for violation of the NFL’s drug policy. The suspension is the result of a MISSED drug test, not a failed one, and the reason it hasn’t yet been announced is that the appeal process is still going on. No date for Bell’s appeal has been set, though it’s expected that it will be heard before the start of the regular season, meaning that if it’s not overturned, he would miss the first four games of the season.”
While it’s news to some of us, it apparently isn’t to the Steelers: NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport tweeted that the team has known for the “past several weeks” that Bell “likely wouldn’t be on the field when the season began,” adding that Bell has missed tests plural, not just one.
But there have at least been rumors floating that Bell was once again running afoul of NFL rules; asked by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review about his missing a test, Bell denied that was the case:
— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurke_SI) July 22, 2016
In addition to missing the last eight games of the regular season last year due to his injury, Bell also missed the first two games, suspended under for violation of the substance abuse policy after he was arrested for marijuana possession and DUI in 2014.